For weeks, Napoli have been mooted as Liverpool’s chief rival for the signature of midfielder Piotr ZIelinski. The Serie A Club had a bid of around £12M plus a player on loan accepted by Udinese after they signalled they would turn down a similar offer—minus the player on loan part—from Liverpool. The player, though, favoured Liverpool.
However, there’s a new twist to the tale, with the admission this week that Napoli are now out of the running for Zielinski. They made their pitch to the Polish international, but in the end could not convince him and are now moving on to other targets. However, that doesn’t mean Liverpool are in the clear, as the new suggestion is that AC Milan are now after him.
"Zielinski has attracted the interest of many, including AC Milan," Udinese president Giampaolo Pozzo told Gazzetta dello Sport earlier today. "I can say no more about them. We did have an agreement with Napoli, but they failed to reach terms with the player, so now we will have to see how things develop. What’s for sure is all parties must be satisfied."
Last week, it was further revealed that while Liverpool had proposed a fee, one that Udinese signalled they would not accept, they hadn’t yet made a firm offer. It seemed to leave the player’s future in some doubt, as well as leading many to question whether Zielinski was as serious a prospect for the club as many in the media were making him out to be.
Surely, given the offer Napoli had accepted, if Liverpool really wanted Zielinski they could have found a way to bridge the gap between their proposed offer and Napoli’s bid. Failing to do that, or to even make a formal offer, seemed to suggest Zielinski was a second choice target. Despite that, sources with ties to the club continue to claim he remains a top priority.